An emotional novel about a young Jewish boy whose parents die at the hands of the Nazis but he is saved by a Catholic Frenchwoman and raised in her faith. When the war ends Michel's aunt in Israel claims him but "Maman Rose" Michel's foster French mother refuses to give him up and the battle is soon joined. What begins as a personal quarrel in a small provincial town slowly and inexorably grows into a cause célèbre-- involving the hierarchy of the Church and the leaders of French Jewry, as the boy goes into hiding passed from one secret refuge to another by Maman Rose and by the priests and nuns. The conflict that divides France-- reviving old passions and stirring up anti-Semitism and anticlericalism-- is played out in the heart of the child himself. But in the end it is up to young Michel, torn and devastated by opposing loyalties and loves, who must decide his own fate.